If You Want to Write

gogh.chambre-arles
If You Want to Write

No writing is a waste of time….With every sentence you write,
you have learned something. It has done you good.
― Brenda Ueland

Some days the dog will go
unfed, most surely un-washed
and -combed. Your wife

or lover will languish
in bed upstairs, driven finally
to watch foreign films

with English subtitles
until he or she gives up,
adjusts the covers,

and turns out the light. Your
kids will hone survival
skills like baking

fries or frozen pizzas, maybe
even learning to spot the least
dirty school uniform

in a large, abandoned pile. But
you will feel every comma
like a stroke

of good luck, fall in love
with random words—
weevil, genus, rugosa,

and burred—sit in silence
and ambient smoke
till the last line appears,

and you have done some good.

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